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KL Rahul slams 2nd Test hundred for India, shows why he's here to stay

Rohan Raj | Updated on: 20 August 2015, 17:12 IST

After missing out in the first Test at Galle, Indian opener KL Rahul showcased his batting prowess to notch up his second hundred on the first day of the 2nd Test against Sri Lanka at the P Sara Oval stadium in Colombo.

The 23-year-old budding cricketer brought up his hundred in 180 balls with 12 fours and a six. With India reeling at 12/2 early in the day, Rahul stepped up his game and stitched a 164-run partnership for the third wicket with captain Virat Kohli who also reached his fifty.

Though India lost their skipper after he was dismissed for 78 runs by Rangana Herath, Rahul kept going strong to hold the fort at the other end. He added 55 runs for the fourth wicket alongside Rohit Sharma to help India recover lost ground.

Soon after he reached his hundred, the Karnataka batsman was dismissed at 108 runs by Dushmantha Chameera while trying to hook a short delivery. The Indian batsman was visibly unhappy with himself after throwing away his wicket rather than building on his innings.

Rahul, who took just seven innings to record his second hundred in Test cricket, is only fifth in the list of batsmen who have scored their second ton in fewest innings for India. In the four Test matches he has played so far, Rahul has scored 247 runs including two hundreds.

Domestic career

KL Rahul made his first-class debut in the 2010-11 season for Karnataka. Though he took some time to establish himself in the domestic circuit, the 23-year-old enjoyed a breakthrough 2013-14 season where he laid the foundation of Karnataka's Ranji Trophy triumph with 1,033 runs including three hundreds, three nineties and a Man of the Match performance in the final.

During the 2014-15 Duleep Trophy, Rahul smashed 185 runs in the first innings and 130 runs in the second for South Zone. Though his contribution went in vain with his side losing the game to Central Zone, his efforts earned him the Man of the Match award. His performance also helped him in getting selected in the Indian Test squad for the Australian tour in 2014.

Rahul created history by becoming the first triple-centurion for Karnataka in a first-class match early in 2015. He scored 337 runs off 448 balls while playing against Uttar Pradesh at the M. Chinnaswamy stadium in Chennai. In the same Ranji season, Rahul averaged 93.11 in the nine games he played.

International career

Following his batting heroics in the 2014 domestic season, Rahul was picked in the Indian test squad for the Australian tour. He was handed over the Test cap by MS Dhoni and made his debut for India on 26 December, 2014 at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. Replacing Rohit Sharma in the playing eleven, Rahul failed to make an impact on debut with scores of 3 & 1 in the two innings.

After a forgetful debut, Rahul notched up his first Test hundred on 8 January, 2015 in his second match at the Sydney Cricket Ground. Rahul scored 110 runs in the first innings and 16 in the second against Australia. He was also a part of the 15-man squad for India's tour of Bangladesh in June 2015, but later withdrew due to dengue fever.

First published: 20 August 2015, 17:12 IST
Rohan Raj @ro4an_raj

After a poor stint in gully-cricket quashed his hopes of turning pro, Rohan moved away from the playing field and began criticising those who were still on it. Football eases his mind and watching City paint Manchester blue is his elusive dream. When not talking, thinking or dreaming about sports, Rohan can be found listening to EDM or watching movies. A sports correspondent at Catch News, he has previously worked with Hindustan Times, Daily Bhaskar and India Today.